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Tuesday, August 7, 2018

Healthy Versus Unhealthy Boundaries

Setting healthy boundaries is an important part of lasting sobriety. Boundaries allow you to nurture your wellbeing, establish your identity and protect your mental and physical health. There are different levels and types of boundaries, including physical, emotional and mental boundaries. In general, healthy boundaries determine what we will, and will not, accept in order to stay strong, safe and happy. They are a way to preserve your self-care and self-respect. 

A big part of building healthy boundaries is finding a healthy balance. Here are some examples:

Unhealthy: Giving a lot and receiving nothing back.
Healthy: Being in a relationship where the other person reciprocates.

Unhealthy: Trusting no one or trusting anyone.
Healthy: Striking a balance of trust and skepticism.

Unhealthy: Telling everything to everybody or anybody.
Healthy: Sharing a little at a time while checking to see how the other person responds.

Unhealthy: Falling in love with anyone and without much thought.
Healthy: Taking time to decide whether a potential relationship is right for you and your recovery.

Unhealthy: Going against your personal values or morals to please others.
Healthy: Maintaining self-respect and personal values despite what others want.

Unhealthy: Allowing others to direct your life – without questioning.
Healthy: Trusting your decisions and communicating your needs.

Unhealthy: Self-abuse – sexual, food, physical or substance abuse.
Healthy: Treating yourself with kindness, humor and love and respecting your body and its needs. 

Let Our Mentors Guide You
Even with the recovery skills you’ve gained, you may need help when it comes to setting healthy boundaries for your new sober life. One of the advantages of sober living at HAUS is having fellow residents and a wonderful support team to help you stay clean and respect yourself while you transition from treatment to “normal life.” To learn more about our mentoring services, call today: 888-551-4715.


Monday, July 16, 2018

Mental Health Advice for Dealing With the News

tragic newsWhether you turn on the news or scroll through social media, it often seems like you can’t escape the many horrible things going on in the world. Violence and trauma in the news is tough on everyone – and it’s often more difficult to handle if you’re also struggling with a mental illness like PTSD, anxiety or depression. There’s a higher risk factor for anxiety [and related issues] for someone with a traumatic experience in their background,” Stephanie Dowd, PsyD, a clinical psychologist in the Anxiety and Mood Disorders Center of the Child Mind Institute, told Teen Vogue

Unfortunately, you can’t just shut it all out – nor should you because it’s important to stay current. So how can you deal with the extra stress and anxiety that the news can bring? Here are a few tips to safeguard your mental health if you find yourself particularly sensitive to the news.
  • Expect and accept your reactions. If you react strongly to the news,
    don’t beat yourself up. Practice some self-compassion by taking a deep breath and reminding yourself that it’s okay to experience these emotions. 
  • Limit visual news sources. It’s one thing reading about a tragedy and another looking at visual images of a tragedy. If you’re sensitive to the news, then it’s best to keep up on current events via written form.  
  • Relax your senses. Listen to relaxing music, meditate or soak in a bubble bath – do your best to engage your senses in a soothing way. 
  • Seek support. When your emotions are fragile, it’s always best to reach out to your supports. Call a family member or friend or anyone with whom you feel close and comfortable. 
  • Focus on the helpers. This Mr. Roger’s quote went viral after the Newtown tragedy in 2012: “When I was a boy and I would see scary things in the news, my mother would say to me ‘Look for the helpers; you will always find people who are helping.” Focusing on the helpers can help restore your faith in humanity and provide some hope amid the disturbing headlines. And it may even inspire you to give back in some way. 
Rewards of Volunteering
At HAUS Recovery, we believe your recovery is strengthened when you serve others. Studies show that volunteers are less likely to feel isolated or depressed. Volunteering also helps you develop a more accurate view of your life and reminds you of the importance of the shared human experience. To learn more about our volunteer placement service, call today: 888-551-4715.








Monday, July 2, 2018

Surviving July 4th Sober

sober july 4th
Dreading the upcoming holiday? No matter where you are in your sobriety, the Fourth of July can be tough and reminiscent of partying and drinking. To help you have a fun, safe and sober holiday, we’ve put together some tips to help you enjoy your Independence Day and your freedom from addiction. 

Stick with your sober friends. Whether you choose to hang out with one close sober friend or a larger group from your recovery community, make this holiday about being social and sober. Start the day with a group hike or arrange a movie or bowling outing or head to your local parade. If you get stuck on ideas, just pretend that you're kid again. Run around in the heat, have a water balloon toss or roast some marshmallows before heading to the fireworks.

Get active. Physical activity is a surefire way to boost your mood and it will also help balance out all of those extra calories from hot dogs and burgers. Gather up some sober friends and family and test out these fun ways to stay fit this July 4th
  • Three-legged race
  • Sack race
  • Freeze tag
  • Scavenger hunt
  • Tug of war
  • Frisbee
  • Soccer
Host a BYONB party. BYONB stands for “bring your own non-alcoholic beverages” and it’s an easy way to stay social and enjoy your holiday without any temptations.

Do something for someone else. Especially if you’re not in the mood to celebrate, the 4th of July can be the perfect time to give back to others. Volunteer at a soup kitchen or simply help another friend in recovery.

Don’t suffer in silence. You deserve to have a fun 4th of July and sober celebration with family and friends, so reach out if you’re having a bad day, feeling insecure or are tempted to drink or do drugs.

A Fun Sober Life at HAUS Recovery
Sobriety is the beginning of a fun, fulfilling and lifelong adventure. Our schedule of activities is designed to strategically fill your time, nourish your body and enrich your spirit. To learn more how we can help you transition from rehab to everyday life without losing your way, call us today: 888-551-4715.  


Tuesday, June 19, 2018

Navigating Job Interviews After Recovery

job interviewBeing employed is a crucial part of long-term recovery. Showing up for work each day will help you to learn new skills, gain self-confidence and self-sufficiency, have steady income and stability – all critical components for lasting sobriety. That said, job interviews are often stressful! Luckily, a little preparation can help. Start with these tips.
  • Set your intentions ahead of time. Are you or are you not comfortable about talking about your past addiction and recovery? How and when would you share the information? What exactly would you say about your recovery? Are you able to emotionally handle any prejudice? Could your hard-won sobriety serve to demonstrate your ability to work hard and overcome adversity? Answering these questions ahead of time will put you in the driver’s seat so you’re better prepared on the day of the interview.
  • Be consistent. If you decide to keep your recovery to yourself, make sure that your social media presence aligns with your decision for privacy. In other words, you might want to take a look at your privacy settings and/or edit any existing content. Also, you likely have gaps on your resume from when you were in active addiction or treatment and you may need to explain these to a potential employer. 
  • Write down your strengths – and how they’ll help you do the prospective job. This is another pre-interview activity that can help ease nerves on the day of your interview. Especially if you tend to struggle with self-confidence, this exercise can help boost your feelings of self-worth so you go into your interview with your head held high. 
  • Know your rights. The federal Americans with Disabilities Act prohibits employers from discriminating against people with substance use disorders who aren’t currently using drugs. 
  • Remind yourself that perseverance pays. Look how far you’ve already come in your recovery, thanks to your commitment to rehab. Now it’s time to use that same grit to go out and get that job that will give you independence, accountability and purpose in your new sober life.
Employment Help at HAUS
Accountability and being self-supporting are vital steps to the reintegration process, so we encourage our clients to work. Our staff will assist with resume building and more. To learn more about our services, contact us today: 888-551-4715.


Tuesday, June 5, 2018

Nostalgia During Recovery: What You Need to Know

nostalgiaAs summer rolls around, it’s easy to get nostalgic for your former days of hanging out on sunny days or warm nights drinking or doing drugs with your old group of friends. After all, addiction was likely a substantial part of your life and it’s pretty normal for these memories to pop into your mind now and again. 

But if you find yourself romanticizing and daydreaming about these times you need to take notice. This is because nostalgia can be a slippery slope into relapse. 

Let’s first talk about nostalgia – what is it and how can it hurt or help your recovery? 

Nostalgia is often defined as “a sentimental longing or wistful affection for the past, and often for a period or place with happy associations.” Feeling nostalgic isn’t always negative, especially if you’re summoning past memories that help motivate you to stay on the sober path. In this way, a bit of nostalgia can serve as a great reminder of why you’re working so hard in your recovery. 

However, if you begin longing for a past way of life that included abusing alcohol and/or drugs, it can be dangerous. For one, when you’re nostalgic, you tend to focus on only the good and not the bad. In other words, you’re not daydreaming about being hung over or embarrassing yourself or all the hurt you may have caused friends and family members. And this type of nostalgia can easily make you lose your way and forget why you’re sober and even help you rationalize an unhealthy decision. 

Certainly you can’t stop nostalgia, but you can redirect your thoughts so they better serve your recovery. And you can also make sure that part of your recovery includes meeting new friends, experiencing new things and making new memories that keep your mind busy. And, hopefully, one day you'll look back fondly on all you've learned on your journey toward lasting sobriety.  

Making New Memories at HAUS Recovery
We believe that sobriety is the beginning of a fun, fulfilling, and lifelong adventure. Our schedule of activities is designed to strategically fill your time, nourish your body and enrich your spirit. To learn more how we can help you transition from rehab to everyday life without losing your way, call us today: 888-551-4715.  



Tuesday, May 22, 2018

Creative Ways to Give Back to Your Community

volunteering
According to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, there are four essential components of a life in addiction recovery: health, home, purpose and last but not least community. 

Perhaps the best way to develop a sense of community is by volunteering. By giving back to your community, you’ll enhance your self-worth, find meaning in your new sober life, build a network of healthy relationships, boost your job skills, reduce stress and reduce your risk of relapse. In other words, volunteering in the community is a perfect way to do something positive for yourself and your recovery while helping others at the same time.

Fortunately it’s pretty easy to find an opportunity to give back. There are plenty of local organizations that welcome volunteers – the key is just finding a cause that aligns with your own interests and passions. Here are a few ideas to get you started:
  • Pal around with some pets. Animal shelters are a great place to lend a hand and spending time with animals will have plenty of mental health perks for you, too. Many shelters now have reading programs to help ease animals’ anxieties. Call your local rescue group to see how you can help.
  • Send a note. Handwritten “Get well soon” or “inspirational” cards can help cheer up members in your recovery community as well as others in the community at large, including children’s hospital patients, cancer survivors or even seniors. Put on your creativity cap and start sending colorful and uplifting wishes to those who need them the most.
  • Double up your recipes. The next time you plan on whipping up a batch of homemade cookies or comforting lasagna, consider making an extra batch to you local fire or police station or veteran’s group. It’s an easy way to thank them for their dedication and selfless services.
Help Yourself and Others at Haus Recovery
During your stay at the HAUS, we hope you take advantage of the mentorship offered, and in turn, benefit fellow residents with your personal recovery insights. In time, everyone grows in strength and empowerment as they share both doubts and successes. To learn more about our mentoring services, call today: 888-551-4715.



Tuesday, May 8, 2018

30 Days of Better Mental Health

It’s Mental Health Month, created by Mental Health America, and one of the many important messages this year is that small steps can have a big impact on your mental health. In fact, MHA created a list of things you can do this month to boost your emotional wellbeing and overall healthy self. 

Bonus: They’ll help give you greater strength to endure the ups and downs of recovery, too.
  1. Keep a journal. Write down 3 things you’re grateful for and 3 things you’ve accomplished
  2. Plan a sober holiday. Having something to look forward to has been study proven to boost happiness for up to 8 weeks, notes MHA. 
  3. Build on your strengths. Do something your good at and then use that self-confidence to tackle a tougher task. 
  4. Turn down the temp before your turn it. Keep your room cool – between 60˚ and 67˚ Fahrenheit – for optimal sleep.
  5. Make a plan. List one thing you want to improve in your life and one small step you can take to help that happen. 
  6. Get creative. Try a new recipe, write a poem, paint, experiment with a Pinterest project – whatever gets those creative juices flowing. 
  7. Treat yourself to dark chocolate. Go ahead and pop a few pieces a few times per week. According to MHA, chocolate is filled with flavanoids, caffeine and theobromine, which all work together to improve alertness and mental skills. 
  8. Share your story on social media. Talk about your personal experience with mental illness and/or addiction. This will not only empower you but may empower someone else to seek help. And don’t forget to include #mentalillnessfeelslike, notes MHA. 
  9. See the sunny side of things. Put a positive spin on something that wasn’t so great that happened in your day today. 
  10. Break out the crayons. Coloring for about 20 minutes can help you clear your mind. MHA suggests choosing a design that's geometric and a little complicated for the best results.
  11. Laugh it up. A good chuckle does wonders for anxiety. Call a funny friend, check out cute videos online or cue a comedy. 
  12. Go off the grid. Shut off your smartphone and disconnect for the day. This means no Facebook, twitter, text messages, emails, etc. Use the free time for a little face-to-face time with someone you care about. 
  13. Get down while you do housework. You’ll gain a sense of accomplishment by getting your chores done and you’ll boost your mood! Dancing reduces levels of the stress hormone cortisol and increases feel-good endorphins in the body, according to MHA. 
  14. Let out a big yawn. This simple act has been shown to improve alertness and mental efficiency.
  15. Soak in a warm bath. Try adding Epsom salts known to boost magnesium levels, which can be depleted by stress.
  16. Write it out. Journaling has been linked to fewer symptoms of depression, especially if you’re writing about an upsetting or stressful experience. 
  17. Hang with a furry friend. Spending time with animals has been found to lower cortisol (stress hormone) and boosts oxytocin, which stimulates feelings of happiness. 
  18. Stay in the now. Try a little mindfulness meditation to help you stay in the present and prevent dwelling on the past or future. 
  19. Put on your tourist hat. Making time for fun is a surefire way to boost your mind. Why not start in your own town or city – you may be surprised by all of the cool things in your backyard. 
  20. Prep your week. Make your lunches and/or pick out your clothes for the week ahead – you’ll save time and sanity in the morning. 
  21. Load up on omega-3 fatty acids. Omega-3s, found in foods like wild salmon, flaxseeds or walnuts, help build healthy gut bacteria and decrease rates of depression and schizophrenia. 
  22. Forgive someone. People who forgive have better mental health and have been found to be more satisfied with their lives.
  23. Smile. Even if it’s forced, smiling can help lower your heart rate and tame tension.
  24. Send a thank-you note. Written expressions of gratitude are linked to increased happiness.
  25. Make a date with friends and/or family. According to MHA, people are 12 times more likely to feel happy on days that they spend six to seven hours with friends and family.
  26. Spend time in nature. Whether you take a stroll through a park or a hike in the woods, research shows that being in nature can increase energy levels, reduce depression and boost well-being, notes MHA.
  27. Get some mood-boosting vitamin D. The best way is soak up the sunshine for 15 minutes without sunscreen. 
  28. Step out of your comfort zone. Try something new. A big part of lasting sobriety and good mental health is finding sober excitement in your life. 
  29. Reward yourself. Even small milestones deserve a pat on the back. This will help keep you motivated and moving forward.
  30. Put exercise on your calendar. Whether you carve out 10 minutes or 30 minutes, write down a time that you’ll be able to be active and stick with it.  
Relapse Prevention at Haus Recovery
When the stresses of life overwhelm you, it’s easy to turn to your drug of choice in order to escape. Keeping relapse at bay is about cementing new habits and remaining accountable to the recovery support system – and we’re here to help. To learn more about our recovery residences, call today: 888-551-4725.